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Film Review: Ennavale

FOUR FRIENDS, their music troupe, hand-to-mouth existence, a heroine who offers an invaluable suggestion for the troupe to succeed - one has seen all these already a few years ago in ``Pudhu Vasantham''. In Sri Sai Deva Productions' ``Ennavale'' the same elements are seen again but with a few new dimensions thrown in for that different flavour. But undoubtedly Madhavan is the selling point of the film. The young man's mirth, sadness, romance and aches are bound to impress viewers. But a couple of his scenes reeks of melodrama that bogs down even a natural performer like Madhavan. The young man brought up in an orphanage, not knowing his date of birth till he is 25(!) and turning boisterous with joy when he finds he is a few years older than the girl he is in love with (why is it so very important?), is too juvenile for words. For Madhavan, it is merely a prosaic exercise in melodrama.

The new heroine Sneha could have shown more emotions and reactions in certain scenes. I mean, there was the hero singing his heart out for the woman (the location, expression, mood and movements all akin to Arvind Swamy's ``Uyirae'' song enaction in ``Bombay''), while the heroine with hardly any expression, seems to concentrate solely on her movements and angles, with a plastered smile now and then. That she is just doing what she is told is only too obvious. So the scene lacks the much-needed spontaneity. But later on in the film Sneha does get her reactions right.

James Vasanth (Madhavan) heads a light music troupe. His three friends are part of the orchestra and all four are orphans from the same orphanage. Vasanth falls in love with the landlord's daughter Lakshmi (Sneha). He is initially shocked when he learns that she is already married and divorced, but the fact hardly matters to him. Though, she is a divorcee, true to filmi style, the marriage had not been consummated. After some initial apprehension, Lakshmi relents. And by then it is rather late and time for the climax.

Venu Arvind is betrothed to Lakshmi and as expected confusion ensues before all ends well. The bridegroom is too mercenary and interested only in Lakshmi's wealth. He is marrying a divorcee, he says, and so deems it a sacrifice. When the truth is out, logically Venu Arvind and his father should have walked out. Instead they stand transfixed listening to all the sermons, arguments and counters of the various other characters. Watching the duo in the background with nothing to say or do is plainly pathetic. Another such character is ``Thalaivasal'' Vijay who begins with a bang as the sadistic husband, gets lost till almost the end, surfaces in the climax and clams up when confronted by the hitherto docile wife. The story, screenplay, dialogue and direction are by J. Suresh.

Venu Arvind looks more aged on the big screen than he does on the small. Comedian Venu Madhav, a new face, shines in the role of Madhavan's friend who has the voice of a woman.

A film where Madhavan is the mainstay.


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